Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Get yer rocks off, get yer rocks off honey....

Here today, gone tomorrow.

Here to stay! Perhaps one of the most unfortunate tag lines a cycling team could ever hope to have. A bit like 'All are riders are clean', there's nothing you can ever predict for sure in the world of cycling. I have long been of the belief that a team that styles itself as 'Here to stay' will be gone in a few years. Sadly my scepticism looks like being proved right as the current economic climate hits sales of rocks. (There are still plenty at our local garden centre, but alas no takers, even at 50% off). What is sad is that when (not if) the team goes down the toilet it will be the younger riders and team staff that are left out of pocket, the has beens and ex-dopers have made their money and doubtlessly have plenty stashed away. Wouldn't there be value in carrying out some cost cutting now? There are plenty of names on the list that could have a black line through them, thus freeing up some 'capital' to keep the rest of the team going.

More doper scum news.

Johan Museeuw has been found guilty of using a range of products that would cause a chemist to sit up and take note. Museeuw confessed in January 2007 to partaking in in the product now known as Ricco's little helper, the legal bods have now all collected their fees and as such the due course of the law is said to have been run.
Museeuw and three others, Jo Planckaert, Chris Peers and Mario De Clercq, have all been given a suspended 10 month sentence and a fine of 2,500 Euros (ESPN news, Yahoo) or £15,000 (Cycling Weekly).
Prosecutors had been calling for 2 years in the clink, sadly this never happened and the four will get to walk away with nothing more than a small dent in the bank account and a ban from bike racing. The investigation that led to the four getting nicked took four years, thousands of hours of police time and involved phone taps and raids on houses and offices. Needless to say the four are considering an appeal, FFS. Now I don't know much about Belgium law, but is it possible that fines can go up on appeal? That would put a smile on my face.

And the good news.

Whilst Museeuw and his evil chums do their best to despoil the image of cycling Vision 1 Racing (the team formally known as Swift) do their damnedest to go the opposite way.
Vision 1 are still looking for a main name sponsor, so if you happen to have a few hundred thousand Euro spare......
What would you get for your money? Well how's this, Nicole Cooke, World and Olympic champion (the only cyclist ever, male or female to do the double) a team of hard working racers, based in Belgium with a great management structure Team Swift

I've blogged on them before, but hey, I talk about dopers a lot and this is a hell of a lot more worth while.
Swift / Vision 1 don't play at bike racing, they have a permanent base in Belgium and compete all year round, cross in the winter and road in the summer. They are well respected in their adopted country and continually deliver good results. Go on, you know it makes sense.


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